UKmap-200Rebalancing and the British Political Economy

Programme leaders: Craig Berry and Colin Hay

This programme encompasses research on the transformation of the British growth model since the 2008 economic crisis. Since that time, policy-makers have consistently claimed to be seeking to ‘rebalance’ the British economy. SPERI researchers have evaluated the success of this agenda, and interrogated critically the underlying objectives of rebalancing and the implications for economic recovery. The nature and future of economic development within the North of England (and to some extent other sub-national economies within the UK) is a core focus of this research agenda at present, but it also connects to wider research within SPERI on British manufacturing industries and the productivity problem, changing labour market structures, and the political economy of inequality. SPERI researchers have also sought to explore what an alternative, progressive growth model might look like, and have undertaken work on the political and institutional forms that would be needed to deliver meaningful change within the British economy.

Recent and forthcoming publications:

Ongoing projects:

  • Craig Berry is conducting research on the political economy of Northern England, focusing in particular on the role of manufacturing industries in the Northern economy, and situates this work within a broader agenda addressing centre/periphery relations within growth models across Europe.
  • Craig’s work on UK pensions provision also includes research on pension fund investments, considering how they can be ‘reoriented’ to productive activity.
  • Colin Hay continues to work on the sources of instability inherent in any growth model and how appropriate attention to such sources of instability might allow us to build a more dynamic account of capitalist institutional change.
  • Richard Jones is working on the changing political economy of technological innovation, encompassing analysis of how this relates to the structure of the UK economy.
  • Martin Jones and David Beel are conducting research on the changing territoriality of local economic governance in the UK brought about by the shift to city-regional governance structures.
  • Scott Lavery and Jeremy Green are conducting research on the economic geography of the UK in the post-crisis period, focussing in particular on the relationship between real wage retrenchment, loose monetary policy and neoliberalisation across the UK’s regions.